Bus routes have always played an important role in the travel industry, and now, Canada has one less option.
Greyhound Canada, on Thursday (May 13), announced that it is shutting down all of its remaining bus routes in Canada for good.
The bus carrier pulled out of Western Canada in 2018 and temporarily suspended its routes in Ontario and Quebec when the COVID-10 pandemic first hit in 2020.
But now the motor coach company is eliminating its Canadian domestic service permanently as travel restrictions continue to plague all areas of public transportation.
"A full year without revenue has unfortunately made it impossible to continue operations," spokesperson Stuart Kendrick said, as reported by CBC. "We deeply regret the impact this has on our staff and our customers, as well as the communities we have had the privilege of serving for many years."
The company’s American affiliate, Greyhound Lines, Inc., will continue to operate cross-border routes to Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver once the land border reopens.
Greyhound Lines, Inc. is a separate entity from Greyhound Canada and Thursday’s announcement has no impact on Greyhound Lines’ operations within the U.S.
All Ontario and Quebec routes (excluding Canada – U.S cross-border services) that were temporarily suspended in May 2020 will permanently end as of midnight, May 13, as follows:
- Toronto-Niagara Falls
Speaking to CTV News on Thursday, Kendrick said the decision to pull the plug in Canada was due to the “95 per cent drop in passengers” at the outset of the pandemic, and lack of government support.
He said many coach companies were referred to existing pandemic supports, which called “negligible” for the transportation industry, prompting Greyhound Canada to suspend service last May
“There's really been a lack of support,” Kendrick said. “We don't get subsidies.”
Transport Minister Omar Alghabra posted a statement to his twitter account on Thursday afternoon, expressing his disappointment in Greyhound’s decision.
“We know that many Canadians depend on this service,” he wrote, noting that the government will work with provincial partners to “explore options to address this gap.”
Customers holding tickets originating in Ontario or Quebec for travel within Canada after May 13, 2021, may request a refund.
Customers with non-expired Canadian travel vouchers may also request a refund of unused travel voucher funds.
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